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Multi-Channel Input and my AVR


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#1 of 9 OFFLINE   27dnast

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Posted September 03 2009 - 02:00 AM

 I have a Pioneer VSX-1016TXV AVR with a 7.1 Speaker set-up. My AVR controls the crossover function. Recently I purchased a LG BD390 Blu Ray Player. This receiver can decode and output the latest 7.1 codecs (is that the right word?)... so I have the blu-ray player hooked up to my receiver using 8 RCA cables and the analog multichannel inputs on the back of the receiver. My question is this: Does that kind of input completely bypass how I have my receiver set-up? In other words, does it bypass the fact that I have my crossover set-up to kick 80Hz and below sound to my sub using the LFE... etc., etc? My other option, I believe, is to run an HDMI cable from the blu-ray player to the AVR... and then run an HDMI cable from the AVR to the Display. Is there any inherent advantage to that?

#2 of 9 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted September 03 2009 - 03:09 AM

Yes, using the analog multi-channel inputs bypasses the receivers bass management capabilities.

HDMI won't help you in this case, since the Pioneer receiver does not pass audio via it's HDMI connection.  The analog inputs are the only way for you to get the lossless Blu-Ray audio.

Jason

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#3 of 9 OFFLINE   27dnast

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Posted September 03 2009 - 06:01 AM

 Okay... so basically this means that I need to make all of my speaker settings on the set-up menu of the Blu-Ray player.  My AVR is simply volume control at this point.

I guess I'm confused as to how the frequencies are divided up... Does the Blu-Ray player control the crossover for the sub?  I wonder how I can find out what that setting is... and to see if I can manipulate it.

I must say, for all my bantering, the sound quality is really great... the first film I watched was Master and Commander... and the audio for it was WAY better than the DVD.  I just thought the sound coming out of the rears was a bit to loud... that's what tipped me off as to what was going on.

It bums me out that my MCACC settings are completely lost, too.  Do you have any suggestions?


#4 of 9 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted September 03 2009 - 07:12 AM

To my knowledge, few if any Blu-Ray players offer crossover settings for the LFE channel.  The audio setup for the analog outputs is usually limited to which speakers you have, are they large or small, delay, and level adjustments.

Few receivers offer any bass management to their analog inputs, so yes, you're pretty much stuck.  I'm in the same situation myself - I have the Panasonic BD-55 and am using the analog connections.  I agree that overall, the improvement in sound quality compared to DVD is tremendous - much more than I was expecting.  Although it could likely be improved a bit with increased tweaking ability (like setting the crossover), I figure compared to the DVD the added improvement would be incremental, anyway.

That's my rationalization for now.

Jason

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#5 of 9 OFFLINE   27dnast

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Posted September 03 2009 - 08:03 AM

 So, should I go into the Blu-Ray player and do the following:
  • Set my Sub to "Yes" and "High"
  • Set my Front surrounds and Center Channel to "Small" and sound output to "Medium"
  • Set my Rears and Rear Surrounds to "Small" and sound output to "Low"
???

I'm a little confused about how I should go about tweaking the settings....

Also, should I turn on my subwoofers on-board crossover and have it limit itself to 80Hz and below?

I guess it's all a win-win.  Just curious to hear your thoughts...



#6 of 9 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted September 03 2009 - 09:14 AM

You should set the speakers up pretty much the same way you would through your reciever.  Definitely turn the sub on.  If your mains are full-range speakers, set them to "large" otherwise set them to "small".  It's almost always the case that the surrounds be set to "small" since they're typically smaller bookshelf-sized to begin with.

As for the audio levels, the Blu-Ray setup should be able to provide a test tone that cycles through each speaker.  If you have an SPL meter, then you can adjust the levels of each individual speaker pretty accurately to a reference level.  If you don't have an SPL meter, you can at least try to ballpark the levels by ear - make sure you're sitting in the prime listening spot.  Doing it by ear is by no means accurate, but it should get you pretty close.

I would think that if your receiver's crossover was set to 80Hz before, you can expect to get pretty similar results by setting the crossover on the sub to 80Hz, but I can't be sure of this.  Perhaps someone else can chime in on that.

Master and Commander does have a very dynamic soundtrack, and the surround usage is very aggressive.  After running through the setup, you should probably try a couple other movies as well to see how it compares.

Jason 


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#7 of 9 OFFLINE   27dnast

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Posted September 03 2009 - 02:00 PM

 Jason-

I don't have an SPL meter... but are there guidelines for how low the sats should be (fronts vs rears vs rear surrounds vs center)?

I think I remember reading that the rears/rear surrounds should only output about 30% of the sound of the front channels?

Any resources out there?


#8 of 9 OFFLINE   Jason Charlton

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Posted September 04 2009 - 01:06 AM

When properly calibrated, and when listening to a test tone (white noise), the volume at the listening point should sound the same from all speakers.  It's up to the individual sound design of each DVD or Blu-Ray that you listen to that determines how much sound goes to each speaker.  Some sound designers are much more agressive than others when it comes to deciding how to split up the sound - that's why it's important to calibrate using a test tone.  It removes any ambiguity and ensures that the relative emphasis of any one speaker to another is as close to what was intended by the original sound designer.


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#9 of 9 OFFLINE   27dnast

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Posted September 04 2009 - 01:28 AM

 Gocha... so I should get an SPL... and then measure the volume levels coming from the speakers... and make adjustments on my blu-rays settings to get it as close as possible.

Thanks for you input... appreciate it.

T